Monday, September 1, 2014

Amicus Curiae

One of the things you have to teach in US government is amicus curiae briefs or amici briefs for short.  They are "friends of the court briefs.  In the Hobby Lobby case, for example, 80 were sent to the US Supreme Court.  What I always tell my students is that this is a place where the justices and their clerks get many arguments to present in their decision.  Now a W&M (proud alum here) professor has done her research and found that between 2008 and 2013 there were 124 citations from amici briefs.  Considering that there are only roughly 70 cases a year - so 420 total over the period - that means there is a one and four chance of an amici brief having its facts mentioned.  Of course this doesn't forget that oft cited are also the plaintiff and defendant briefs.   More here

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